The C3G/Rap1 pathway promotes secretion of MMP-2 and MMP-9 and is involved in serous ovarian cancer metastasis

Cancer Lett. 2015 Apr 10;359(2):241-9. doi: 10.1016/j.canlet.2015.01.019. Epub 2015 Jan 21.


Complete resection is pivotal to improve survival to epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC). Crk SH3-domain-binding guanine nucleotide-releasing factor (C3G) is involved in multiple signaling pathways and it has opposite roles in different cancers. The present study aimed to identify C3G expression in ovarian tissue samples from patients with EOC and to explore its association with tumor grade. Eighty-seven archival paraffin-embedded, formalin-fixed, ovarian cancer tissues with serous histology were stained for C3G by immunohistochemistry. To evaluate the contribution of C3G to Rap1 activity, 36 patients with serous ovarian cancer (SOC) were investigated. Additionally, C3G was knocked down in SKOV3 and HEY cells. C3G regulated Rap1 activity and high Rap1 activity was correlated with poor differentiation, advanced FIGO stage, and unsuccessful cytoreductive surgery of SOC. Knockdown of C3G suppressed cell invasion, intravasation and extravasation, and reduced Rap1 activity and secretion of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP)-2 and MMP-9. C3G-mediated activation of Rap1 could direct the tumor pattern of human SOC by promoting the secretion of MMP-2 and MMP-9. These results suggest that C3G is involved in the metastatic spread of EOC.

Keywords: C3G; Metastasis; Rap1 activity; Serous ovarian cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Disease-Free Survival
  • Female
  • Guanine Nucleotide-Releasing Factor 2 / metabolism*
  • Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 2 / metabolism*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Nude
  • Neoplasm Transplantation
  • Neoplasms, Cystic, Mucinous, and Serous / enzymology*
  • Neoplasms, Cystic, Mucinous, and Serous / mortality
  • Neoplasms, Cystic, Mucinous, and Serous / secondary
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / mortality
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Peritoneal Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Peritoneal Neoplasms / mortality
  • Peritoneal Neoplasms / secondary
  • Shelterin Complex
  • Telomere-Binding Proteins / metabolism*


  • Guanine Nucleotide-Releasing Factor 2
  • Shelterin Complex
  • TERF2IP protein, human
  • Telomere-Binding Proteins
  • MMP2 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 2
  • MMP9 protein, human
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase 9